J. Wells Steinwart (Woody), 91, of Overland Park, Kansas passed away peacefully on May 20, 2016. He was preceded in death by his parents, George Frederick Steinwart and Ruth Wells Steinwart. He is survived by his wife of 65 years, Carolyn Susan Steinwart, sons George F. Steinwart II (Mollie, granddaughter Sara), Edwin D. Steinwart (Mendy, grandsons Nate and Will), Peter W. Steinwart (Dana, grandsons Nick (Emily) and Matt (Katie)).
Woody lived a long and full life. He was born in Columbus, Ohio August 4, 1924 and lived in Nashville, Tennessee as a child. After graduating from Webb School in Bell Buckle, TN Woody enrolled in Amherst College in 1942. World War II interrupted his college career, and he served in the United States Army and was stationed after basic training in Rome. He ended up a correspondent for the Stars and Stripes army newspaper. After the war he stayed in Europe and attended the University of Rome and the University of Oslo. He returned to finish college and graduated from Amherst. He was active in the Amherst alumni association for many years and enjoyed attending class reunions.
While at Amherst he was fortunate to meet his future wife Susie. They were married on June 30, 1950 and lived together for the next 65 plus years. Son George was in born in 1951 in Columbus; Ed was born in 1953 in Kansas City, and Pete was born in 1957 in South Bend, Indiana.
Woody worked after college first for the Johns-Manville Company and then joined Wallace Manufacturing Company which was headquartered here in Kansas City. Work sent the family to South Bend and then back to Kansas City after he was promoted to national sales manager. In 1972 he started his own sales and marketing firm which today is run and operated by Pete and Ed.
Woody enjoyed many lasting relationships with business colleagues throughout the country. He enjoyed traveling on business and upon retirement Susie and Woody enjoyed traveling, especially to Europe. Anyone who knew them knows that the trips were quite often rated by how great the food was. The man loved to socialize over a great meal. Woody loved many other things in life including playing golf at Indian Hills Country Club, and he lived and died with Ohio State football every fall. Woody in retirement enjoyed painting, especially scenes from trips to Europe. A couple paintings now hang in buildings on the Amherst campus. As his health declined late in life you could always get his attention by telling him a good golf story and reporting another Buckeye win. Woody, son Pete and grandson Matt all had holes in one on hole number 3 at Indian Hills. He loved to point out that not many families accomplished that feat. Family helped sustain him as his health declined and stories of his grandchildren and their accomplishments always brought a smile to his face.
A celebration of Woody’s life is planned for later this summer. The family wants to thank all the caregivers who helped Woody live a peaceful life to the end. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be directed to the Alzheimer’s Association
Heart of America Chapter
3846 W. 75th Street
Prairie Village, KS 66208